I was young and full of a 700 credit score. The world was my oyster. I could apply for loans, cards with high balances no one could stop me. I was unstoppable. That was until I was spending more than I was making. The credit card payments became too high. Before I knew it, I was dodging creditors, refusing to open the letters and then, years later I was hit with the wage garnishment.
The first time was shocking. I was wondering what the hell was going on. Initially, I thought my employer had got me for my hours. I called my manager raging mad trying to figure out why such a large chunk of my check was missing. I called the Marshalls office and made an agreement with them of something I could afford. One week, I was unable to make it to their office before they closed and the next paycheck, my wages were being garnished.
I learned a few tricks about garnishment including the switch up. Switching jobs doesn't STOP your garnishment but it does put it on hold until the company you're working for reports that you're working for them. Most small companies it takes a while almost a year until the next tax time. Larger companies report immediately and you'll be found. No matter where you go, they will take your check until you pay what you owe.
Last Monday was the last day of a garnishment of mine from Capital One. It's been 3 years. I owed them give or take $3,000. I work seasonally and wage garnishments are not allowed to touch things like unemployment so that's something to bare in mind. However, a peculiar event did happen at the end of my garnishment. It appeared that there was a second garnishment, I called our processing company ADP to see what gives. They informed me that Capital One had sent another order in addition to the one on file stating I owed them an additional amount of money for fees and interest. Fortunately, I knew to call the Marshall immediately and have the office fax over a letter that would cease the payments. Capital One had committed fraud by making up an order that never existed to recoup additional funds and hoped that they were dealing with a rookie but they're not.
Here is the direct law regarding wages
In New York State, a creditor can garnish the lesser of 10% of your gross wages or 25% of your disposable income to the extent that this amount exceeds 30% of minimum wage. If your disposable income is less than 30 times minimum wage, it cannot be garnished at all.
The last part is extremely important. If your disposable income not total income, disposable is less than 30 times minimum they can not garnish you but YOU have to be diligent.
Here are some tips to combat wage garnishment in NYC
1. Do not miss court dates. Missing court dates gives them an automatic judgement in their favor which you can have repealed but you don't want to go through that process. Avoid this by showing up the first time.
2. Be realistic and don't let them bully you. These companies will try to suck you dry for every penny you have. Some interest rates are exorbitant make sure you have your paper work from when you signed the contract, some companies (like Capital One) will not only give you a higher interest rate but tag on expenses you never owed in the first place.
3. Keep a calendar with the amounts you paid and what you have left. I was very diligent with knowing my payments and predicting when it would end. A lot of people don't pay attention and end up having to fight these companies for their funds which will take forever. Don't be that person who lets money leave their hand freely.
4. Learn for next time. Wage garnishment is no joke. If it happens to you once make sure it never happens again! Make realistic credit agreements, learn the 30/60/90 rule. Otherwise, it can go on your credit report as a tax lien and makes it difficult for companies to trust your creditworthiness in the future.
5. You don't need an expensive lawyer. Everything you need to know about the law is right there on the free world wide webs.
OTHER POSTS IN MY PERSONAL FINANCE SERIES
Assistance if you've fallen behind in your rent
Life after fucking up your credit
Buying a Metrocard can help build your credit
I was first introduced to ToSave earlier this year in January it was one of those websites that I felt was too scary to shop on because it had EVERYTHING kind of like an Ali Express. I received an email from their PR company to do a review on the website and things did not go smoothly. Some of the items I wanted were not available in my size o were sold out but eventually we picked items that they had in stock and items that would fit. As always when shopping on Chinese sites, I am so worried with sizing because I don't fall into the traditional S,M,L,XL I'm in between M,L, XL and 1X so shopping can be super difficult for me. I posted tips on how to shop overseas (sites like Zaful, SammyDress, SheIn and now TOSAVE) and you can see this blog post here and this exact outline is what I used to make my determinations with sizing on ToSave.
I ordered 4 items and they came in approximately 11 days. Shipping from China usually takes anywhere from 10-30 days so this was pretty exceptional. All my items fit except for the lingerie piece that I had, the bottom piece was too small but it was beautiful quality. The lingerie item was the only thing that I felt didn't match the picture 100% I thought it would have more structure to it like it did in the picture however, for $4.00 you really can not complain. The most expensive item in this haul was the dress and it was $8. I'm interested in ordering more stuff from this site they have many home items and probably more bralettes because you can never have enough of those.
If you liked my mini haul, check out their sister site BeautyIn Hair
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1. Rock a bodysuit
After out mid sections expand and attempt to rubber band back to normal, we still try to hold on to our former selves. Our past lives of Forever21 camis and tight H&M tees are over. Bodysuits give coverage to your front and your back without the plumbers crack or chicho cleavage.
2. Not every jean needs to be skin tight
In the 2000s it was all about the skinny low rise. While we gasped at our moms rocking their mom jeans, we can do it too with a little more pizazz. Mom jeans are flattering to the tummy area without being too tight and still provides the assmazing view of the backside you want. Plus with the options of shoes to wear the jeans become much greater. My favorite pair of jeans came from Banana Republic.
3. Show your arms/ shoulders
You can be sexy without showing cleavage. I was so ecstatic to see off the shoulder tops make a come back. Those things were my favorite. You can grab some cute, inexpensive, off the shoulder shirts from my favorite site SheIn or from Rainbows if you are close to one. Some of them are similar to styles you may have seen at Zara for a fraction of the price.
4. Get fitted professionally for a bra
One of my biggest post partum challenges was the guess work of my bra size. I was doing the math adding and subtracting 32s, 34s, dividing cups until I figured something that I thought worked for me. A bad bra can ruin a great outfit. There's no need for your bra to be so tight that your skin seeps underneath in a cry for help. Back fat shouldn't be accentuated unless of course that's your thing. No one has the same size boobs all their life and like a pap smear you should be getting fitted yearly. AdoreMe.com is actually doing FREE fittings this month so check them out.
5. Go from body con to skater
As a smaller lady, my go to outfit was a crop top, body con skirt and Tory Burch flats. Now that I have a little more meat on me, I wear body con skirts occasionally but I really love A-line and skater skirts. They're so feminine and stylish. You can add elements like a leather jacket or studs to create a cute, contrasting look.
6. Do not get rid of your crop tops
Yes, I know the majority of us don't want to show our stomach and that's fine. But, do not get rid of your crop tops. Crop tops are not only great layering pieces but are excellent to pair with high waisted linen pants and a- line skirts.